Yesterday, Leinster and Ireland flanker Josh Van Der Flier was named the Accenture Men’s XVs Players’ Player of the Year 2022, while Wasps and Ireland second-row Sam Monaghan picked up the Accenture Women’s XVs Players’ Player of the Year 2022.
It continues a glorious week of personal accolades for Van Der Flier, who was named on the five man short-list for the EPCR Player of the Year. Van Der Flier was also nominated for Six Nations Player of the Year, but lost out to France’s Antoine Dupont.
Van Der Flier beat off competition from Caelan Doris, Hugo Keenan and Mack Hansen, and upon receiving the award he thanked his teammates who voted for him and had acknowledged his services this season.
“I have many great memories from what has been a special year for me, on both a personal and professional level. To be acknowledged by my teammates and opponents in this way is particularly humbling. A special word of thanks to my fiancé and family who continue to help guide me through!”
Monaghan was nominated alongside Linda Djougang and Eve Higgins, and the celebration marks a positive note in what has been a difficult year for Irish women’s rugby.
Monaghan had this to say after accepting the award: “This team has been through a tremendous amount this year, we always keep fighting. The bravery these players have shown, past and present, on and off the pitch, is captivating. To be voted by them for this award is an extreme honour and we will continue to fight to put the green jersey in a better place for the next generation.”
Other winners on the day included the Irish men’s team who won Moment of the Year for their Triple Crown win, while Caelan Doris picked up Men’s Try of the Year for his effort against New Zealand in November, and Eve Higgins picked up Women’s Try of the Year.
The Young Player of the Year awards went to Cian Prendergast and Linda Djougang, while Terry Kennedy and Amee-Leigh Murphy Crowe picked up the 7s Player of the Year awards.
Andrew Porter was also recognised for his work in the community by winning the Contribution to Irish Society Award.